I came across a Bible study that God put in my path at the Christian Book Store called, “The Calloused Soul”, by Evelyn Watkins. Can I just say I did NOT want to do a self help study. I only wanted to learn more about the word so I could better answer questions given to me by people and a self help Bible study just seemed too self loving for me. But I picked the book up and bought it anyways. After all, God told me to.
One of the things in the book she instructed to do was ask people who they think you are and how they think others perceive you. Let me say now, I didn’t want to do this. It was embarrassing and scary. But oh, what a difference it has made in how I perceive myself. I have learned so many things, like it is okay I am changing. It’s okay to let go. It’s okay to forgive and move on. A tremendous weight has been lifted off of my shoulders. If I could only share with you the hurt I have been carrying for many years, from youth until now, but I am not quite there yet. I feel light but heavy with the love of Christ. I patted that little girl on the back, hugged her, and told her it was okay. This certainly isn’t some fly by night revelation either. It has taken much contemplation on my part. We all know we are messed up in some ways but figuring out where and how to fix it is hard. Only by God have I begun to start this journey. My past is just that. It’s over now and God will use it someday and for now I can move on and when that day comes for Him to use my hurts for His glory, since I am making steps to forgive and heal, I will be ready.
:::Hope you enjoy:::
The old house looks the same. White siding with navy blue shutters. As I drive slowly by, the white railing along the porch is still standing. The trees my granddad planted are strong and green. Even the one I stood in front of for pictures before prom. I am just waiting for my grandmother to open the door and look out the screen door but she will never open it anymore. She sold it about a year ago and moved up with my uncle who will not let us, his sisters’ children, see her. But there is no sense in hashing out the bad in my mind. There are so many sad memories that only hinder growth, so I think back on the good times I did have through the layout plan of that old house and only use the sad for purposes God wants me to.
I take a step in through the front door and straight into the foyer that leads to the old wooden staircase. I still remember which steps creaked and how to swing properly off them by way of the small decoration only railing. I see the piano next to the wall and the old 70’s style couch aside the other wall. The eight trackstereo is to the left side of the door leading to the corner where we always set the Christmas tree. For just one moment, I am little again.
I run up the stairs without a hitch in my mind. Elementary in age, short and skinny but limber and strong. Straight up the stairs to my siblings’ rooms. Each one of which I will claim as my own for a short time. Both with views of neighbors’ houses.Neighbors who, will slowly come and go. I see myself growing but yet shrinking at the same time. Like an elderly person growing in age but shrinking in size, I grew in stature and figure but shrunk into a comfortable safe haven in my mind. And as I grew older and lost my innocence, so did this house. Standingstrong in all it has seen while slowly things were removed from the house. A chair here, a child there. Like me, slowly becoming a shell of its former self. But I fully believe my God allowed me to be emptied completely, leaving only broken parts, so that He could fill every last crevice and cover me completely full of His love. To whip me around fast and quick knowing full well, if He had done it slowly I would keep reaching for the old me, the one unwilling to change and let go, still inside.
It was a slow creep of growth to where I stood, in that pit all alone, as He positioned people in my life perfectly, while I walked circles in muck and mire, blind & oblivious to His actions. Then, out of nowhere, He took my heart and ran.
One of my traits given was an enigma. (a person of puzzling or contradictory behavior). Once I set down and thought about it, it made sense. The Lord took many broken pieces, many of which contradict each other, and put them together usingHimself as the glue. I am one big wonderful mixed matched person who God put back together that way for a reason. A person who I once saw as messed up and ugly, He is showing me is beautiful and loved and is no longer that girl she was and doesn’t have to hide in the shadows looking out on others she wished she could be like. Complete.
There is a reason I am eclectic in character and mesh well with so many different type of people. I don’t have to be someone else because being me is pretty cool too.
I can stop being dragged back to my old pit of attributes and characteristics by the undertow of my past that only defined a girl before she met God. I can fully rest in the fact that I am a saved child of God and it is okay to see myself as the woman God has made me into as of now. I don’t have to look back on my former self. Instead, I can be proud of the woman He has transformed me into. It’s okay to have people complement meand it is okay to ask for help because there are good people out there. I am so glad I did ask for help on this particularassignment. I have been mulling it over in my head since I got the responses back, and how blessed am I to have wonderful sisters in Christ who were very gracious to do so. I asked God what He wanted me to do with all this and it is now clear to me that He wants me to see myself as He sees me, which is directly related to how others see me. He wants me to see myself as how I could be as well so that He can use me later on. After all how can he use me if I am still broken? That’s like trying to use a hammer that has no head.
I am to work on talking face to face. Sometimes I use my writing as a crutch because I am scared to put myself out there. But God wants me to. This I am positive of. I am a good speaker when emotions are not involved but I know God wants me to work on that. Maybe to better talk with people one on one. There is not a doubt in my mind about the fact that spiritual warfare goes on in all our lives. How better for the enemy to thwart your steps to God then to remind you of whom you were before Him. But now that I have recognized where God wants me to work on I can fully rest in the fact that I am and will beokay.
My God loves me and He has a purpose for me. One that is probably far away but each step I take in building myself in the image He wants me, His image, is one step closer to what He purposes. I can shed this little girl and all the wrong doings done by her and to her and walk upright in the image He wants that I am going to try so hard and fill.